The Nebraska congressional delegation has introduced legislation to provide tax relief for Nebraskans impacted by the severe 2019 storms and flooding. The bill, known as the Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2019, would deliver tax relief to areas that received a federal disaster declaration between January 1, 2019 and April 15, 2019.
“Nebraskans have had their homes and businesses destroyed by blizzards and severe flooding. We are strong and tough, but I’m committed to providing people with some relief in as many ways possible. I hope Congress will quickly enact the Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2019 so that we can lighten the load for families who are hurting,” said Senator Fischer .
“Offering tax considerations to areas hit by natural disasters is just one small piece of what the federal government can do to assist Americans struggling in the aftermath ” said Congressman Adrian Smith, a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.
“Nebraska is going to rebuild, and some common-sense tax relief is a good way to help our neighbors. The recovery process is going to take time but we’re going to get the job done,” said Senator Ben Sasse.
“This devastating flood destroyed more than 2,000 homes, 340 businesses, and took several lives, making it the worst natural disaster to hit the state in our 152-year history. The economic impact has also been severe and will hurt the state of Nebraska for years to come” said Congressman Don Bacon.
“Right now, we need to put aside any political differences, find consensus, and lend a helping hand to our fellow citizens devastated by these unpredictable, unforeseen events,” said Congressman Jeff Fortenberry.
The bill is also cosponsored by the entire Iowa Congressional delegation, including Senator Chuck Grassley, the Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.
The Act provides the following tax relief:
- No penalty for early withdrawals from retirement accounts for those in affected areas
- Employee retention credits for employers with inoperable businesses who continue to pay employees
- Eliminating the deduction cap for donations to projects in disaster areas, driving charitable donations to affected areas
- Expanding casualty loss deduction to assist with destroyed property,allowing deductions for property damage not covered by other insurance and other federal programs
- Making earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) changes, allowing people whose wages fell due to the disaster to claim the previous year’s credit if their wages decrease